Cambodia, Malaysia pledge to further trade, investment relations

09:17, May 12, 2010      

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Cambodia and Malaysia will further promote and strengthen their trade and investment relations with the visiting of Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak and the signing of six deals worth more than 1 billion U.S. dollars.

During the three-day official visit to Cambodia, wrapped up Tuesday, Najib Razak has met with Cambodian leaders including Prime Minister Hun Sen and was granted an audience by King Norodom Sihamoni.

Najib and Hun Sen had exchanged a wide range of discussions over the bilateral cooperation between the nations and the assistance as well as investment in Cambodia.

Both of them highly valued their relations. Hun Sen thanked Malaysia for its continued support in various fields, and saying that the visit of Najib Razak and his business delegation "will add a new dimension to Cambodia's socii-economic development effort, through the expansion and strengthening of both countries' cooperation in the field of politics, security, economy, social affairs, and culture."

The Malaysian prime minister has pledged to encourage more investors to Cambodia. "Malaysia has been the biggest investor in Cambodia for 14 consecutive years with investments totaling 2.19 billion U.S. dollars. Cumulative Malaysian investments in Cambodia during the past two years total 118 million U.S. dollars," Najib Razak said.

It was the first visit to Cambodia made by Najib Razak since he came to office last year, and the outstanding achievement during the visit was the deals among the private sectors of the two countries that had agreed in principle to engage in business agreement that worth in total of 1 billion U.S. dollars.

Najib Razak was not only accompanied by his government members, but also was with several dozens of business people and investors who then met with their counterparts in Phnom Penh.

Only a single deal out of the six agreements and memorandums of understanding, worth 700 million U.S. dollars--was on information communication security.

The others covered the enlargement of fast food KFC, the raising of chicken farm, the establishment of 20 bistro shops, the joint venture of halal food, technical and training exchange program, the reinforcement of Malaysia-Cambodia Business Council.

Sok Chenda, secretary general of Council for Development of Cambodia said the agreements showed a good signal to foreign investors to Cambodia, in particular, to other Malaysian investors.

Data showed Malaysia's major exports to Cambodia are electrical and electronic products, chemical products, gas, crude petroleum, machineries and transports equipment, whereas Cambodia' s major exports to Malaysia were rubber, garment and logs.

Malaysia ranks fourth among foreign investors to Cambodian in 2009.

Malaysia's exports to Cambodia showed that in 2009, there was 154 million U.S. dollars, compared to 165.3 million in 2008.

And the imports from Cambodian in 2009 showed at 15 million U.S dollars, compared to 14.3 million U.S. dollars in 2008.

Eang Sophalett, spokesman of Prime Minister Hun Sen said during the bilateral talks, Hun Sen had asked Malaysia to inject more investments in agricultural so as to boost rice exports from Cambodia, and he had thanked Malaysia for assistance that included the railway link of 106 kilometers inside the country, and Razak had expressed his moods over the positive change in the country.

At the business luncheon, Hun Sen said Cambodia has great potential in several important sectors such as agriculture, agio- industry, infrastructure, labour intensive industries, export oriented industries, oil and gas, mining and tourism.

"These sectors have not been fully capitalized and still offer many investment opportunities," he said.

Hun Sen, meanwhile, expressed his thanks to Malaysia for continued supports through training of Cambodian officials, scholarships and especially, the acceptance of Cambodian laborers which stood at 25,445 up to now, the largest number among Cambodian workers who are working in foreign countries.



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